Viet Nam and the US should sustain and strengthen economic and trade links, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh said, describing these links as key to bilateral relations.
The Vietnamese official, who is on an official visit to the US from 20-21 April, made the suggestion at meetings with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Advisor of the US National Security Council Herbert Raymond McMaster on April 20 in Washington DC. He reaffirmed Viet Nam’s consistent foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, diversification and multilateralization of relations, and international integration. Viet Nam and the US boast great potential to strengthen cooperation, he said, suggesting the two sides expand links in education, training, science-technology, security-defense, and humanity, and in overcoming the consequences of war.
He stated that Viet Nam is willing to work with the new US administration to reinforce and deepen the Comprehensive Partnership, based on respect for independence, sovereignty, and political institutions of both nations, contributing to maintaining peace, stability, cooperation and development in Asia Pacific and the world.
For his part, State Secretary Tillerson and Advisor McMaster highlighted the flourishing development of Viet Nam-US ties in recent times, expressing their belief that the relationship will become stronger. The new US administration attaches importance to and supports its Comprehensive Partnership with Viet Nam, they stressed, adding that the two sides need to enhance exchange of all-level visits to foster cooperation. Tillerson affirmed that his country would work with Viet Nam to ensure that the APEC 2017 will bring about practical results.
While comparing notes on regional and international issues, Tillerson and McMaster underlined the importance of maintaining peace, stability, security, safety, and freedom of navigation in the East Sea. The US backs the settlement of disputes in the sea by peaceful measures based on diplomatic and legal processes, in line with international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), they stressed.
At the meeting, Minh conveyed President Tran Dai Quang’s invitation to US President Donald Trump to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in 2017 and visit Viet Nam. Tillerson and McMaster affirmed President Trump will attend the event in Viet Nam.
Advisor McMaster also conveyed President Donald Trump’s invitation to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to visit the US.
The same day, the Vietnamese official also met US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who affirmed the US supports Viet Nam to continue receiving international development assistance loans from the World Bank in accordance with Viet Nam’s development in the near future as well as cooperative activities within APEC./.